As more Baby Boomers turn 65, choosing a Medicare plan can be overwhelming. Fortunately, if you need a Medicare agent in Orange County, Skyline Benefit is here to help.
Our AHIP-certified Medicare team can assist you and your loved ones with choosing the right insurance options.
Medicare is a federal government program that provides health insurance coverage for Americans aged 65 and older, people under 65 with specific disabilities and people at any age suffering from End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) (i.e. permanent kidney failure that requires a kidney transplant or dialysis).
Types of Medicare Plans
Medicare Supplement Plan (Medigap)
A Medicare Supplement plan is a private insurance policy that covers all or some of the health care costs that Medicare doesn’t cover. These costs can include out-of-pocket expenses such as copayments, coinsurance and deductibles.
Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C)
Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies that contract with Medicare. This insurance provides your Part A (hospitals) and Part B (doctors) benefits, and most plans also offer prescription drug coverage (Part D). Some Medicare Advantage plans can cost as low as $0.
Prescription Drug Plan (Part D)
Part D coverage provides prescription drug coverage for Medicare enrollees. You can obtain Part D coverage through a standalone drug plan (PDP) or Medicare Advantage plan (MA-PD) inclusive of Part D coverage within the plan.
When should you buy Medicare?
Initial enrollment is a seven-month period which includes the first three months before your 65th birthday, the month you turn age 65, and the 3 months after your 65th birthday. If you sign up during the first three months of the Initial Enrollment Period, your coverage starts on the first day of your birthday month. If your birthday is on the 1st of the month, coverage begins on the first day of the previous month. Enrolling the month that you turn 65 or during the last three months of this period can cause a delay in coverage.
During the Initial Enrollment Period, you qualify for guaranteed coverage. As a result, insurance companies must accept your application regardless of any health conditions you may have. However, if you buy coverage after the Initial Enrollment Period ends, you may not have this same protection. Insurance companies can also raise your rates or choose not to offer you a policy because of a pre-existing condition.
Open Enrollment (October 15 – December 7)
Anyone with Medicare can join, switch, or drop a Medigap, Medicare Advantage or drug plan. Your coverage will begin on January 1, if the plan gets your request by December 7.
General Enrollment (January 1 – March 31)
If you already have Part A coverage and you get Part B for the first time during the General Enrollment Period (January 1— March 31), you can also join a Medigap or Medicare Advantage Plan at that time. Your coverage may not start until July 1.
For more information regarding your Medicare application or Medicare plan options, please give us a call today at (714) 888-5116.
Our Medicare team can help you to go over your application process and to choose what plans could be worth looking into.